When designing a home according to high standards of sustainability, an architect must consider all details of construction, from the way the structure absorbs and releases solar energy, to rainwater collection and storage, to incorporating double-paned windows to reduce heat transfer.
But, while architects can employ many strategies to ensure maximized sustainability after residents have moved in, they must also consider the environmental impact of the materials used to construct the home itself. After all, transporting resource-intensive materials across long distances to the construction site significantly increases the home's overall carbon footprint.
To mitigate these adverse effects of construction, the solution for many eco-conscious architects and homeowners is much closer than one might think: opting for locally sourced and responsibly harvested timbers and woods. Instead of cutting down pines and oaks in sensitive forests to use for hardwood floors and cabinets, architects can make use of already fallen trees near the construction site to source their design needs. The following homes, façades, floors, and products come from wood found nearby, and are either left untreated for a rustic appearance or milled and cured on-site for a richer finish. Sustainability from start to finish.